Royal Caribbean Approved to Conduct Simulated Test Voyage

Freedom of the Seas - Photo by Royal Caribbean International

Royal Caribbean International has officially received approval from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) to conduct a simulated test voyage with volunteers on Freedom of the Seas from June 20 - 22, 2021 sailing from PortMiami.

This simulated voyage is the next step (Phases 2B and 3) for Royal Caribbean to get authorization to conduct cruises under the Conditional Sailing Order (CSO) without having to require COVID-19 vaccinations for 98 percent of passengers and 95 percent of crew. 

Royal Caribbean International CEO Michael Bailey shared a letter from the CDC for the line’s approval to Facebook

The acceptance is on a provisional basis and requires that Royal Caribbean meet a number of conditions prior to the June 20 sailing date. The CDC has stipulated that the simulated voyage must be conducted with at least 10% of the maximum number of passengers that will be allowed on the first two restricted voyages by Royal Caribbean. 

According to protocol issued in the CDC’s technical instructions for simulated voyages, volunteers for test cruises must be 18 years of age or older. Passengers are not required to be vaccinated against COVID-19, however if they do not have proof of vaccine they must have official written documentation from a health care provider or must self certify that they aren't at a heightened risk for COVID-19. All volunteers must agree to be evaluated for COVID symptoms before embarking, after disembarking, as well as agree to be tested for COVID-19 three to five days following the sailing. 

Recently the CDC issued new updates for vaccinated passengers relaxing mask-wearing guidelines, shore excursion rules, as well as protocol for screening passengers. 

Sources: USA TODAY

This is a breaking news story. We will continue to provide updates when they become available. 

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